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Jeff B.

Jeff B.

Joined on 11/18/10

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Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 12
Most Favorable Review

Excellent value

HighPoint RocketRAID 2720SGL PCI-Express 2.0 x8 Low Profile SATA / SAS Controller Card
HighPoint RocketRAID 2720SGL PCI-Express 2.0 x8 Low Profile SATA / SAS Controller Card

Pros: Great 8 port RAID controller, especially considering the price. 8 ports with just 2 cables. Supports 3TB drives and SATA3 speeds. Very easy to install. PCIe 2.0 X8 support for excellent speed. Can be plugged into an X16 motherboard slot. You can get the 2720, which includes the cables, or the 2720SGL which doesn’t.

Cons: It doesn’t have RAID 6 support but for this price, that is probably fine. It does have a hot spare capability, which works great.

Overall Review: I upgraded 2 Windows 2008 R2 servers from Highpoint 2680 controllers to 2720SGLs to get the 3TB support. Each server has 7x3TB Seagate drives with a 3TB hot spare. All I had to do was swap the cables, install the 2720 drivers and build the new arrays. Highpoint does stores the RAID configuration on the drives, which means a controller failure doesn’t lose the array. I tested pulling a 2720 and replacing it with another 2720 with no loss of data or RAID integrity. I’ve done the same with the 2680s. I’ve also tested moving between 2680s and 2720s on arrays with smaller than 3TB drives.

Most Critical Review

RL-26 review

NORCO RL-26 Heavy-Duty Slide Ball Bearing Rail
NORCO RL-26 Heavy-Duty Slide Ball Bearing Rail

Pros: None that I can think of.

Cons: I previously ordered a set of these in January of 2011 and got the ball bearing model. I ordered the same part number in December of 2011 and received the non-ball bearing model. There is a huge difference in quality, how far they will extend and such.

Overall Review: I'd suggest Newegg stop carrying these non-ball bearing models and go back to the ones they sold in January. The ball bearing units are great and you can get them directly from Norco/IPC for only $1 more than this slide style. I had Newegg issue an RMA and returned these slides.

12/15/2011

Solid drives

Seagate NAS HDD ST4000VN000 4TB 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s Internal Hard Drive
Seagate NAS HDD ST4000VN000 4TB 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s Internal Hard Drive

Pros: Great price, lots of storage and consistent firmware. So far I am very happy with these drives.

Cons: 5900 vs 7200RPM and not 5TB in size.

Overall Review: I have 16 of these in two 8 x 4TB RAID 5 arrays, purchased from Newegg and another Internet retailer. They replaced Seagate 3TB ST3000DM001 drives. No DOA drives and all passed Seatools tests 100% with no bad clusters. From a performance perspective, using Highpoint 2720 controllers, I am getting upwards of 4Gb/s reading from the arrays and just over 3.4Gb/s writing to them. The write hit for 5900 vs. 7200RPM is the expected 18% reduction due to drive speed but I am seeing less than 5% reduction when reading. These drives do run cool between 89-91 degrees F. This is the same as the ST3000DM001 drives but much cooler than the older Seagate ST33000651AS drives. The 3 year warranty is good and all drives came with the same firmware release. With the ST3000DM001 drives you can get many different firmware versions, depending upon where the drives are manufacturer.

Great when paried with EJ240 expander

HighPoint RocketRAID 2711 PCI-Express 2.0 x8 Low Profile SATA / SAS RAID Controller Card
HighPoint RocketRAID 2711 PCI-Express 2.0 x8 Low Profile SATA / SAS RAID Controller Card

Pros: Very inexpensive 4 port controller. Can be easily paried with other Highpoint 27xx series controllers for a multi-controller solution. I am using this with an EJ240 SAS epxander and 16 - 3TB drives in an external chassis. Excellent performance and reliability.

Cons: The Highpoint documentation is a bit sparse but their technical support is pretty good (online only, vocie not available)

Overall Review: I've tested this with multiple 2720 controllers and with a Highpoinrt 2760A (24 x 3TB internal and 16 x 3 TB external drvies). All configurations have worked great and performance using the expander is still over 300MB/sec.

Excellent drives

Seagate Desktop HDD ST3000DM001 3TB 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive Bare Drive
Seagate Desktop HDD ST3000DM001 3TB 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive Bare Drive

Pros: I have over 32 of these in use and have had 0 failures. They run cooler and draw less power than the older 5 platter models. I run these with Highpoint 2720 RAID controllers with 8x3 RAID 5 arrays. For the price, I haven't found a better value 3TB drive.

Cons: Seagate has been reducing the warranty on their drives. It isn't an issue unless there is a failure. Over the years I've only had 2 Seagate drives ever fail and they've been great to work with.

Overall Review: If you have any question on performance, I've achieved transfer rates of 566MB/sec (that's 4.5Gb/sec) between two of the Highpoint 2720 RAID 5 arrays with these drives.

Tons of storage at a great price

NORCO RPC-4224 4U Rackmount Server Case with 24 Hot-Swappable SATA/SAS Drive Bays
NORCO RPC-4224 4U Rackmount Server Case with 24 Hot-Swappable SATA/SAS Drive Bays

Pros: You can’t pack much more storage into a 4RU rack space than this. I have 2 of these stuffed full of 3TB drives for 72TB per chassis. The chassis are solid and easy to assemble. Support for standard ATX power supplies and a wide assortment of motherboards is a plus. You can add a 2.5” boot drive but I prefer a RAID 1 partition off the main array. The front side indicators and USB ports are nice and spare drive trays can be purchased from IPC Direct. Did I mention the great price ? Don’t be fooled by it. These are solid cases.

Cons: The included hot sap 80mm fans are nice. If you are going to be using any of the older 7200RPM drives, then you might want to purchase the 120mm drive bracket. It won’t be hot swappable but will provide better coiling. I have one chassis with the 120mm fans and one with the 80mm fans. Make sure you get the ball bearing Norco slides and not the basic slide versions (i.e. no ball bearings).

Overall Review: I am running two of these with 3 - 8x3TB RAID 5 arrays in each chassis with 3 Highpoint 2720 Highpoint controllers on ASUS Sabertooth motherboards. Superb performance (upwards of 4.5Gb/s or close to 600MB/s from RAID array to RAID array. I have two other Norco chassis’, a 450TH and a 3216. The 4224s are my favorites.